British military’s Dhekelia base in Cyprus hit by ‘grenade’ blast

A man on a motorbike rode up to the police station at Dhekelia garrison and lobbed a grenade, local media reports.

SKY News | Tuesday 13 June, 2017 | 14:05, UK

 

A forensic officer inspects the scene of the small explosion

 

A blast at a British base on the southeast coast of Cyprus has injured a police officer.

The explosion struck the Dhekelia garrison before dawn on Tuesday.

The Cyprus Mail reported a grenade had been thrown by a man on a motorbike.

Police spokesperson Kristian Gray said investigations were ongoing and authorities are viewing the explosion as a criminal case.

“The building suffered no structural damage, just a broken window,” he added.

A grenade was reportedly thrown over the perimeter fenceA grenade was reportedly thrown over the perimeter fence

 

A source told the AFP news agency that the attack could be related to the involvement of the base’s police in a crackdown on illegal bird trapping.

It reported it came after bird trappers had been handed a “heavy fine” by a court.

More than two million migratory birds are slaughtered each year on the island.

A spokesperson from the Ministry of Defence told Sky News that Sovereign Base Areas Police were investigating an explosive incident which took place in the early hours of the morning at the Dhekelia base.

“At this stage the Police are treating this as a criminal investigation. Until the initial investigation has concluded we will not be in a position to make any further comment,” they said.

Cyprus became an independent republic, free from British colonial rule, in 1960, but the UK retains two bases which remain British sovereign territory and house military headquarters.

The sites, at Dhekelia and Akrotiri, cover some 98 square miles of territory and allow the UK to conduct military and humanitarian missions from the eastern Mediterranean.

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